Charge: Stoned driver tried to run down Seattle bicyclist

A driver alleged to have tried to run over a bicyclist after the cyclist told her to stop smoking heroin has been charged with assault.

In charging documents, King County prosecutors contend Taylor J. Betts tried to ram a bicycling off-duty Seattle police officer after the cyclist told her to stop smoking heroin in the Haller Lake neighborhood.

Writing the court, Deputy Prosecutor Danika Adams contended Betts turned violent when a stranger attempted to clean up the area.

“The defendant threatened the life of a passerby who was trying to reduce the drug traffic in his neighborhood,” Adams told the court. “Then, rather than leaving the scene, (Betts) returned to act on her threats by trying to run the passserby down with her car.”

At 6:15 p.m. on Oct. 3, the off-duty officer was riding in the area when he spotted Betts smoking heroin in a parked car, a Seattle detective told the court. The officer knocked on the car window to get Betts’ attention, then told her to take her drugs elsewhere.

According to charging documents, Betts threatened to kill the off-duty officer before driving away. Betts is alleged to have then made a U-turn and sped toward the cyclist.

The off-duty officer told investigators he was able to hide behind a parked car to avoid Betts’ Toyota Camry. He also said Betts continued to yell threats throughout the assault.

Betts fled the area but was later identified as a suspect, the detective told the court. The incident was seen by a bystander who confirmed the off-duty officer’s version of events.

Betts was arrested Sunday and subsequently spoke with police, the detective told the court. Recalling the interview, the detective said Betts admitted to smoking heroin, claimed a cyclist had hit her car but denied trying to rundown the cyclist.

Betts has been charged with second-degree assault and remains jailed.